Last week was Easter week. I got texts and messages wishing me a Happy Thursday, Good Friday, Good and Saturday and Easter day. If I’m honest, I responded without much enthusiasm. I responded more out of obligation than anything.
Saturday evening I went to church…in person, for the first time since March 2020. Don’t get me wrong, I have been involved in church most Sundays since the pandemic began. In fact, I am a part of the online services at Southeast Christian Church. I volunteer as a chat host and will continue to do so.
But Saturday night, sitting next to a good friend, in a sanctuary with so many other people…it was special. I had forgotten just how important gathering together in person is.
And the power of corporate worship blew me away. There were a few times I had to stop singing because I was overcome with emotion as I listened to hundreds of voice singing about our Resurrected King. It happened more than once.
And because it was an Easter celebration service, our pastor had us do the traditional response to “He has risen”! In which the congregation responded with; “He has risen indeed”. We did that a couple of times at the beginning of the sermon and then at the end. We also did it as the service concluded. I couldn’t. I mean I did, but by the second or third time we said that, during each of those segments in the service, I was overcome with emotion.
There’s just something about the sound of many voices, in unison, praising our God, the Risen Lord, that I gets me every time.
I was reminded during that service of the many times that would happen to me on a regular basis, as I attended in-person services.
I was reminded again of the importance of meeting together to worship as a Body of believers.
I was reminded during that Easter service of all Christ did between dying on the cross and leaving the tomb.
I was reminded of the fact that we need each other, even if we don’t always get along.
I was reminded of the loneliness that can ensue when we are separated from each other.
I was reminded of so many things as I gathered together with fellow believers, but what I was reminded of the most was how I had missed those times without even being aware.
I love that we have the ability to connect online with people from other states and nations. That is an amazing use of technology. But I was reminded that being in a physical place is special in it’s own way.
However you worshiped this Easter, I hope you were reminded too.